13 January 2012

Review: Dub Asylum 'Stereo Freeze'

Stereo Freeze
[Loopy Fruit Recordings]

Dub Asylum is the nom de produceur for Peter McLennan (of noted '90s NZ noisesters Hallelujah Picassos). Stereo Freeze gathers six tracks, old and new, which were recently threatened with permanent deletion thanks to a manky old hard drive. Freed of their former confines, they each stack up very nicely against Dub Asylum's past work. Melodica features heavily on opener Jumping Jack Skank (amid spacious echoes and a bouncing reggae beat) and on the dark, heavily percussive Get It Together (sounding like the theme music for a Jamaican version of James Bond); and the instrumental EP features appearances from Chip Matthews (Opensouls, Anika Moa) and Olly Harris (WBC/Kolab). McLennan belies his Picassos roots with plenty of genres peeking out from between the sweet reggae grooves - Skatta lays down slow-motion Afrobeat grooves for a horn-heavy skank to drape itself over - but dub really is the glue holding this excellent release together.

4 stars from 5
David Carroll

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